Thursday, January 2, 2014

Day 761 - 2013 Book Round-Up

So I read 64 different books this year.  For some people that's a lot of books, and for others it's a good start.  Out of all those books I read only 35 different authors.  I like reading the same people apparently.

Thank you Tom Cruise - because of the film Jack Reacher I started reading the Lee Child novels.   I got through 8 of them this year (with another 2 on the pile for this year.  They're great.  I'm always a sucker for fast-paced action/suspense novels and Lee Child delivers in spades.  I only read a couple of them in their correct order, but what's great about them is that I don't need to read them in order to enjoy them.

I also read 8 books by JK Rowling this year.  I plowed through all the Harry Potters again, as well as A Casual Vacancy, which I like to describe as feeling like a Stephen King book, just without the horror elements.  And speaking of King, I read Cell this year.  A great, quick read.

I read a bunch of books from a few of my favorite authors - Gordon Korman, Lawrence Block, and Stuart Woods.  Nine books just from those three this year.  A bunch of those I was simply reading again for the second (or possibly 20th time - no joke).

James Swain was my surprise author of the year.  I bought his novel The Night Monster from the Dollar Store, and it was easily my most profitable purchase of the year in terms of enjoyment.  And then to find out that he's written a bunch of other books has made me happy.  Three down, many, many more to go.

My favorite non-fiction books that I read this year were Marvel Comics: The Untold Story by Sean Howe (duh), and In the Land of Believers by Gina Welch.  She went undercover at Jerry Falwell's church in order to expose evangelical Christians, and instead, while she may not have been converted herself, she got to see them as real people.  It was really a great read for me, in that it allowed me to take another look at my beliefs and strengthen them.  Welch did a great job at not making the book a dry or uninteresting read.  Another solid Dollar Store pickup.

I've got a bunch of books sitting on the floor next to me from when I went to Columbus after Thanksgiving.  I've read three off the stack so far, and I'm itching to get to the rest, but the two library books I've got tell me I need to wait.  But I've finished a book already this year (2014)  - Kill You Twice by Chelsea Cain.  It was the fifth book in a (neverending) series (which is fine).  But what was great, is that I didn't even know it existed.  I had her first three novels in the series (as well as her first book, Confessions of a Teenage Sleuth), and finding books four and five (hardcovers!) in Columbus made the collector in me happy.  I've now started book six (which, apparently, came out a few months ago, and now I have to buy a copy to keep the streak alive) and I've got to blow through it so I don't incur major library fines.

I don't know if I'll read more books this year than last (I won't be vacationing in a tropical paradise this year with lots of time on my hands), but we'll see.

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